The Chicago Bulls won't waste any time parting ways with Carlos Boozer this offseason, according to Joe Cowley of the Chicago Tribune. Cowley reports that the veteran forward's departure is a "done deal." It's unclear whether that means Chicago will use the amnesty clause on him, but as ESPN's Brian Windhorst reports, it's either that or a sign-and-trade.
Bulls told Carlos Boozer it's a possibility he will be amnestied or used in a sign-&-trade but have made no final decisions, sources said— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) July 3, 2014
Why it could happen
NBA Free Agency
NBA Free Agency
The Bulls certainly don't want to keep filling their cap space with Boozer's exorbitant salaries when the can get out of it. That alone makes for a pretty good argument to amnesty or sign-and-trade the forward's contract, which has increasingly become an albatross.
Over the past few years, Boozer has devolved from an above-average power forward to something of a designated scorer and rebounder. There's little else to his game at this point, and that lack of defensive skill always made him a tenuous fit in Tom Thibodeau's lineup.
So the Bulls don't really need Boozer on their roster, and could easily use their resources more efficiently. The question now isn't whether Boozer is a goner, it's how the Bulls plan on executing this whole situation to the best of their ability.
Why it won't happen
To be clear, getting rid of Boozer will happen. It's pretty clear there's no place for his skills or contract in Chicago after all these years.
However, using the amnesty clause on his contract still wouldn't free up enough space for a max-level contract offer, and releasing him that way would take some sign-and-trade options off the table. So the Bulls will need to be careful in determining what they ultimately want to do with Boozer and how they want to time the move.
If the Bulls plan on pursuing a sign-and-trade for Carmelo Anthony, it would be difficult for the team to put together a package that doesn't include Boozer. They'll need his salary to balance the books, which could mean waiting to use the amnesty until the pursuit of Anthony concludes.
Likelihood it happens
Boozer is a goner from Chicago. We don't know where he's going or what kind of transactions it could take, but the Bulls will have a new starting power forward next season. The odds that Boozer gets dealt in a sign-and-trade? 3 out of 10. You know what the odds of his departure are. 10 out of 10.